Advising PINs undergoing pilot this summer to roll out in 2016-17

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Students are urged to see their academic adviser “early and often.”

By R. Eguia

Some Alamo Colleges students who have completed 38-53 college hours will be required to meet with their assigned adviser to register online for fall classes.

Cynthia Mendiola-Perez, associate vice chancellor for student and program development, said 900 students who have earned 38-53 semester hours have been notified across the district to participate in the pilot of the personal identification numbers or PINs.

“We are going to see how it works with this good-sized population and work with feedback from the college directors of advising,” Mendiola-Perez said.

Students are required to meet with their adviser when they complete 15, 30, and 45 hours of college credit in an associate degree program as defined by the State Legislation §9.555.Student Advising, notwithstanding Texas Education Code §51.9685.

Mendiola-Perez said the PIN alerts will be in full operation by October, when the PINs also will be required for students who have accumulated 15 hours.

These PINs will be required for both of these groups for online spring registration.

Joan Tsacalis, director of advising and counseling for this college, said the current ratio for students to advisers on this campus is 500-to-1 for students already enrolled.

A significant number of advisers are undergoing 60-hour training this summer to prepare for the fall semester and new advising guidelines, Mendiola-Perez said.

Faculty advisers do not need the PIN to register students who have completed 38-53 hour; however, Tsacalis recommends they still see their assigned adviser to retrieve the PIN so that they can register themselves online if needed.

If students have recently spoken to their advisers and have developed academic plans, Tsacalis said they could retrieve the PIN over the phone or via email.

Once students have received their PIN, they can use it to register online. The six-digit pins are effective only for the term they are assigned.

The student success division will launch an advertising campaign closer to the beginning of the fall semester to ensure students know PINS are coming.

All new students are required to meet with an adviser before they register for classes.

Mendiola-Perez recommends students seek advising early and often. A student’s assigned adviser can be found in ACES by clicking on the “My Page” tab.

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